Sunday, December 2, 2007

Church Complaints

I recently read an article that summarized most of the complaints about church that I have ever heard. I forget where the article came from or who the author was, but he/she hit the nail on the head. Church people (these are not necessarily the same folks as Christ-followers of Christians, but they can be) are notorious for their unhappiness with the church that they are attending (or not attending).

One problem with this is that these complainers are unhappy with everything. They are aggravated that the church is too hot, but as soon as the air conditioning comes on they are chilled. The Sound system is turned up too loud one Sunday and the next week they cannot hear anything. You get the picture. The same people have opposite complaints.

Well, here are the official complaints from the afore-mentioned article (by the way, I have heard all of these in my churches and from some of the same people).
  • The service is too traditional, or it is too modern. Worship style (music) has become the most controversial issue for local churches in the USA. The truth is that you cannot please everyone with your music selections or instrumental accompaniment. Some will be offended if it is too casual, but if the service is too formal it is not like "home."
  • The sermon is too theological, or it is not theological enough. There is no way to win this argument. You are either preaching down to people, or preaching over their heads. My compromise has been to make sure that everyone understands most of what I say. I sometimes do not get to say everything I want to, but I want everyone to get what I say.
  • The people are too cold, or they are too cliquish. We want the church to feel like a family, but we do not want people to put us on the spot. We want to feel warm and fuzzy, but we don't want to share anything too personal.

My father told me years ago that the only way I would ever find a perfect church was to start my own. The problem would be when someone joined my perfect church they would probably mess everything up.

The church is the body of Christ, the family of God. It is not perfect, but it is becoming what he wants it to be.

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